40 Days in the Desert | Day 5

Once again, I am found slacking… when I made my commitment to posting every day of the Lenten season I had not anticipated a big life change.  A few days ago my grandma passed away and I’m stubbornly getting back on track today.

Day 5 | The Temptation to Doubt

A few weeks ago I had a terrible, but normal, moment where I could classify my feelings towards God as doubtful.  I had just crunched a bunch of numbers and realized our available finances could not fill our budget.  With much deliberating I was able to gather enough money to pay the bills but everything else fell by the wayside (even groceries and gas).

To clarify, this was a first.  God has so faithfully blessed Josh and I for following his calling for both of us to be daring and enter into the world of art rather than the land of a regular job with a regular pay check.  Normally, I bring in the monetary bulk from May – December with wedding season and fall family photos and Josh pulls the financial weight from January – April by playing for a whole bunch of church youth retreats.  In this season, however, we find ourselves scraping by because the Citizen Way is on an unpaid tour instead of in the middle of well paid retreats.

One of my top three spiritual gifts is faith so to shake me in that area is pretty significant.  When I found I didn’t have enough money to put gas in the car I spent a good amount of time mad at and stubbornly removed from God.

In Luke 4:3 Satan is attempting to tempt Jesus to doubt Christ’s true identity: “The devil said to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.'”  This being said in the middle of a 40 day fast walking through a dessert would surely be hard to resist but Jesus counters with the truth in the Word of God: “Jesus answered, ‘It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone.””  Of course Jesus is wise enough to know that Satan is tempting him to do more than just take a suggestion of his but by allowing himself to listen to Satan at all he is giving him a foothold.

Times of questioning our faith are good.  It is important to be honest before our creator and always seeking for answers to hard questions.  However, it is also important to not give in so far as to succumbing to temptation and sin.  While questioning, keep your toes aligned with God’s path and your heart steeped in truth.  As you seek for answers keep your mind daily in the Word.

In my case, it’s hard to admit I doubted God because I’m not certain it was doubt I was experiencing.  I simply wasn’t sure if God wanted to provide for us.  I’m too keenly aware that, despite God’s promises of provision for those who love Him, He sometimes leads us down an undesirable path for the greater good of His kingdom or to test us and strengthen us toward Him in the process.  Ultimately I am willing to follow whatever road he sends me on and it’s important to remember that.  Finances are only the troubles of now and God will find a way to feed us and cloth us if not more than that.  Ultimately He is our Great Provider, our Savior, and our reason for living regardless of the circumstances!

Days 1 – 4 of 40 Days in the Desert posts…

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40 Days in the Desert | Day 4

Day 4 | Temptation Comes in the Highs and the Lows

I love how I find so many times in ready the Bible how it goes directly with lessons I’m learning or need to learn or problems that just came up.  This has been happening freakishly a lot lately and I am thankful.  Today is one such lesson.

My husband, Josh, is in a band called Citizen Way and they are currently touring the US with Big Daddy Weave and Chris August.  They have been gone for 2.5 weeks so far.  I also found out a week ago that my Grandma is dying.  The loneliness meshed with the heartbreak cast me into a very low valley.  Because of my struggle I found my mind weak and prone to letting in lies that ordinarily wouldn’t even register within me.  So not only was I feeling alone and grief-stricken but Satan took my low position as an opportunity to pounce and whisper lies into my weak mind and heart.  And why wouldn’t he?  I’m sure he knows that I am a huge, if not the biggest, sensitivity of Josh’s and he is currently out spreading the Lord’s love every day.  This is a high point in his ministry and a crucial time for Satan to try and bring us down.

I am blessed with fantastic parents so when I was talking to them a couple days ago the both called it out as spiritual warfare.  And guess what?  Since we prayed over my weakness and for Satan to back off I have been just fine.  God is so good!

Jesus is dealing with something just like this in Luke 4.  He is on the brink of his ministry, he just got baptized and is entering into his major years of ministry.  So when Satan has him all alone and vulnerable he seizes the opportunity to try and overcome the Son of God with fleshly needs and desires.

It is times like these, when we are vulnerable, that we need to be on our guard. And, if we are attacked by the evil one, to rest assured that we must be doing something right or are on the brink of something great for God or else he wouldn’t bother.